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Basic Raku product Application:
- Remember Raku items are for Decorative use only. They are not food-safe or watertight.
- All Raku glazes shown here need to have at least a 2 coat application.
- More coats can be applied but it is not necessary.
- Pieces should be dry-footed unless you intend on stilting the piece.
- R702—Raku T and R707—Raku A can be applied with 1-3 coats and get different effects on the area. They are a Matt Copper/Turquoise Swirl. When fired really hot they tend to take on more copper and less of the turquoise or aqua colors. These can be pulled at a cooler temperature and have nice aqua/turquoise coloring.
- CGE550 Azure glaze can be applied as a light coat (brushstroke) on top of R700-Raku Copper Heavy or R701-Raku Copper Light on a textured area and this will create a rainbow of color in that area. It can also be applied all over Light Copper for a silver effect. There is silver in the Azure that causes this reaction.
Using Color Strokes (formally known as PSP’s) to Add Color to Raku Pots:
- When using Color Strokes/PSP’s colors in the raku process you need to apply 2 coats of all colors with the exception of CS611– Red Matters and CS612-Red Alert which need 4 coats. The Color Strokes/PSP’s need to have one coat of CG900 Clear Brushing over them if a true color is desired.
- Color Strokes/PSP’s are matt in finish and will absorb the smoke in the reduction chamber if not sealed with Clear Glaze. Color Strokes/PSP’s can also be mixed with CG900 Crystal Clear 50/50 and 2-4 coats applied if desired instead of applying the Clear over the top of the decoration.
- Once the Color Strokes/PSP’s are sealed with a clear glaze you can add R-700 Raku Heavy Copper accents on top of that area if desired.
- Color Concentrates can be used on the bottom of pots to mark with your initials/name/logo, etc. This will still be there and show through the smoke.
- Thin down R700-Raku Copper Heavy slightly.
- Pour out on a piece of glass.
- Allow to set up and dry before adding another color on top of it if you choose to do so.
- Thin down CGE550 Azure slightly so that it is not really thick.
- Pour over the top of the Heavy Copper to create two layers.
- Allow it to dry completely.
- Using a putty knife about 3” wide, scrape up the dried glaze and it will create little tiny shavings of the colors to create crystals for use with Raku firings. Crystals are attached when the base color is wet. Avoid placing crystals within 1 inch of the bottom of the piece.
- You can use any color combination you want. The reason for using this combination is that the Heavy Copper moves a little in the firing and the Azure has a silver content that will help to create a rainbow effect on the piece.
- Use LE003 Aqua Splash mixed 50/50 with CG900 Clear Brushing.
- Pour out R700-Raku Copper Heavy first and then thin down the Aqua mix and pour over for a different colored crystal.
- CG900 Crystal Clear is a moving clear which will help in the melting of the crystals.
Basic Firing Tips with CFE Kiln:
- Have the following supplies ready before beginning the firing process: Trash bins, Reduction Materials, Tongs, Heat resistant protective gloves/clothing.
- Pieces should be hand-thrown with Raku or High fire Clay body or can be cast using CFE Raku Additive that is added to earthenware slip to create a Raku Slip. Fire to 04 bisque.
- Decorate bisque piece. Dry foot the piece (no glaze on the bottom of the piece). Make sure the piece is dry before it goes in kiln. Wet ware will explode in the kiln.
- Load piece in cold CFE1100 Home Hobby Kiln. The 1st load will take 2-2 1/2 hours to heat to temperature. Keep pieces at least 1/4” away from the kiln walls/front door.
- Programming CFE Kiln—Segment 1 is at a rate of 1798 degrees per hour, up to 1831 degrees. If using crystals on your piece it is recommended that a hold time of 5-10 minutes be added at the end of this segment.
- With proper gloves/clothing and tongs, pull the piece from the kiln at 1831 degrees and place it in a reduction chamber. Allow the piece to cool. Remove from the chamber.
- Pieces can be cleaned up by making a paste with Comet on a rag or sponge, to remove soot. Rinse with water.
- Reloading kiln—If using CFE1100 Home Hobby Kiln and starting the 2nd load you will need to flash the door to cool the kiln to 1400 degrees or lower before loading ware. Bring back to 1831 degrees and pull.
- The copper on pieces will fade over time or if exposed to direct sunlight. Tarnex has been used to bring color back.